Front Lunge Once athletes have demonstrated good mechanics, balance, and strength in all beginner and intermediate leg exercises, Front Lunge can be added to workouts. While Front Lunge is mainly a strength exercise, it also contains components of a reactive exercise. A reactive exercise targets the ability to change quickly from an eccentric to concentric muscle action, commonly referred to as the stretch-shortening cycle. Front Lunge is a reactive exercise because at the bottom of the movement—when front knee reaches about 90 degrees—athletes immediately push themselves back to standing (unlike the slight pause that occurs at the bottom of a traditional lower body strength exercise like the squat).
- Stand with feet hip width, toes pointed forward, and core engaged.
- Optional: Hold a dumbbell in each hand at your sides or one dumbbell at your chest like a goblet. See Goblet Squat.
- Take a step forward with your left foot, lowering hips until your left thigh is parallel to the floor.
- As the front knee bends to form a lunge, immediately push off the front leg to return to standing—stretching then immediately shortening active muscles in the front leg. At the bottom of the Front Lunge the front knee should be in line with or slightly anterior to (in front of) the ankle and the back knee in line with or slightly posterior to the hip while most of the weight is distributed through the hips and core. If knee valgus or knee instability is present (see Low Step-Up) return to beginning and intermediate lower body exercises and avoid loading with any weight until corrected.
- Keep chest tall and shoulders back so that the spine remains neutral—not rounded or over-extended—from head to tail bone.
- Perform desired repetitions and repeat on other side.